French Lessons: Il Pleut/It Rains!

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Reflections on our trip to Paris, written by Judy Brown. This is Post Two in a series titled “French Lessons.”

It rains.  Adapt.  Be flexible.  Despite lugging our rain coats and umbrellas around, Barbara, Lisa and I coped quite well with the drizzle and downpours during our fall Paris trip.

The light sprinkle on the water surface at the garden (Jardins des Nymphaes) at Giverny actually enhanced the visual experience.  The willows were still weeping, the autumn flowers still splashed with color, and the pond now had movement that mesmerized the eye.

Life calls us to adapt to the daily drizzles and to the heavier monsoons. I recall how soon after my first child was born that she unknowingly taught me how to be flexible.  Go on a trip, cook a nice dinner, meet friends at exactly 2 pm.  Forget it.  But it was ok.

Francois, our French tour guide in Paris, took us on a whirlwind trip of the Louvre and Notre Dame. He was well versed in history, a character, and could put any chatty woman to shame.

I often directed the side conversations to learn more about French life and his life.

Francois is happily married to a younger woman from Spain, and they are hoping for their first child very soon.  They even have the conception date planned for December 24!  Hmmmm….will he also learn the same lesson?

I think he might be on a good path to being adaptable, however.

He shared with us that because his small household has 2 native languages, they split the day.  During the day they speak Spanish.  At night they switch to French.  How fair!  How flexible.  How creative! Francois did bemoan, however, that when they argue, the language agreement often fails!

The other man in our life while on our French trip was Frederic–very stately, proper, and I must say, quite good looking!

Our two hour round trip car ride with Frederic provided lots of talking time. I tried not to get too personal, but when I probed about his personal life and asked how long he had been married, he said, “Oh we forgot to get married, but we have been together for 4 years.”

Adapt.  Be creative.  Find spunky new umbrellas, buy fancy rain coats, get plaid vinyl boots. Il pleut.  It could  always rain on your plans.

Photo Above:  Lisa, Judy, and Frederic in Monet’s garden.

Below:  Barbara in her raincoat.

13 responses »

  1. My daughter, Judy, so flexible! Well surely didn’t take after me, her mother. I am proud of her. Life is much more enjoyable, less stressful for those who are flexible and can roll with the tide.

  2. Nice post! Very descriptive! Being flexible is one of those things that we seem to learn with age. It definitely makes life easier and less stressful. I have always been fairly easy-going and flexible. But I wish I had been a little more so when raising my children.

  3. Glad I made you flexible !! Haha I’m sure I can’t take credit for that. Hard to imagine you not being flexible 🙂 xo Great post!

  4. Thanks for sharing photos and memories of your trip. You all look so happy and carefree–the umbrellas add to the ambiance! I wonder if Francois and his wife invite their spanish speaking friends for lunch, and french speaking friends for supper. And what do they serve? If they made a quiche for lunch, what would they call it? But maybe quiche can only be served for supper . . .!

  5. Pingback: The Bouncing Ball of Menopause | Friend For The Ride

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